Why I Don't Go To The Rec Center

As an incoming freshman at University of Cincinnati, I had very high expectations of the campus gym. From the outside, I saw a massive building, full of healthy possibilities. I thought I would walk in and be immersed in some state-of-the-art gym where I would get to workout and finally have that perfect body and maybe even meet some cute people.

Instead, when I finally decided to go inside, I was greeted by countless machines, gray walls and familiar faces everywhere I went. For some reason, every time I went I always ran into people I didn't want to see. This happened in the bathroom, near the treadmills, on a mat or even just walking down the stairs. I always felt like I was being watched by someone or something and it made it hard for me get into my workout.

Don't get me wrong, I love working out! It gives me a way to escape from stressful situations and have a little fun. I get to feel that type of satisfaction that you just can’t get anywhere else because, at the end of the day, I can see the efforts I put into my routine. I also feel like I’m being extra productive because on days I don’t hit the gym I usually just go back to my place to eat and sleep.

I think it would help if all the machines weren’t being used all of the time, or if the gym could be a little less packed so I don’t have to be intimidated by people staring at me all the time. I can never tell if they’re staring because I look out of place among some of the other people working out (although I don’t know why that would be – I usually just wear a white shirt and some leggings) or if I’m just being delusional.​

Regardless of who I’m with or what I'm wearing, I just don't feel comfortable in an environment where I can't perform my day to day workouts without feeling like I don’t belong. Everything feels like its jumbled together and cramped, and I need my space. At other institutions, like the Ohio State University, there are multiple gyms for students. If UC opened up another rec center, I think it would create a better environment where students don't have to feel intimidated and crowded and can work out in peace.